Lewes withstood a barrage of second-half pressure to secure a hard-earned point with a 1-1 draw at Carshalton Athletic, reports Tom Harper.
Tony Russell made one change to the side that beat Enfield Town 4-0 in their previous game just two days earlier, with Kieran Murtagh replacing Bradley Pritchard in the starting line-up.
It was a cagey start, both teams keeping the ball well without really looking like testing the opposition defence.
It took over 20 minutes for there to be a shot on target, with Jake Elliott seeing a strike from the edge of the area saved by Daniel O’Donovan in the Carshalton goal.
The few openings the hosts were able to create were ending with shots from distance, and they saw Matt Everitt just miss the target with the best of these.
Lewes took the lead on 33 minutes, as Ola Ogunwamide beat the offside trap down the left and crossed for Deon Moore to finish at the far post.
This galavanised the Rooks, who enjoyed their best spell of the game, with Murtagh having a half-volley well saved by O’Donovan before Marcus Sablier saw a strike deflected narrowly wide.
It was therefore against the run of play when Carshalton equalised on the stroke of half-time, as Danny Bassett latched onto a raking crossfield pass from Kwaku Frimpong down the right and sent a superb half-volley across Nathan Harvey and into the top corner.
The hosts started the second half brightly and nearly took the lead in incredibly fortunate circumstances through Tommy Bradford, who saw his inswinging corner from the right hit the outside of the near post before being cleared.
They went close again minutes later, Conrad-Kweku Lucan getting the better of Ronnie Vint down the left before putting his attempt into the side-netting with only Harvey to beat.
Lewes were finding it difficult to gain a foothold in the game but passed up a presentable chance to regain their lead when Murtagh elected to try to find Tommy Wood when well placed to shoot himself on the penalty spot.
Carshalton nearly punished the Rooks immediately, launching a counter-attack which ended with Bradley Williams having a strike deflected just wide.
The visitors took control of the game in the final 20 minutes, as they saw a corner from the right headed against the underside of the bar at the far post, scrambled off the line by Archie Tamplin and then blasted against the inside of the post on the rebound before eventually being cleared.
The Lewes goal was leading a charmed life, with Harvey forced into smart saves to keep out long-range efforts from Everitt and Tom Beere either side of a Moore strike at the other end that O’Donovan gathered at the second attempt.
The hosts continued to push for a winner and had arguably their best chance at the start of seven minutes of injury-time, as Lucan beat Harvey to a long ball forward before seeing his effort superbly blocked on the line by the covering Elliott and Beere volley the rebound over the almost open goal.
Lewes saw out the remainder of the game slightly more comfortably, much to the relief of the tavelling supporters, to record an impressive point and make it four points from two games against promotion contenders in little over 48 hours.
The Rooks take a break from league action with a trip to Dulwich Hamlet in the FA Trophy first round on Saturday, kick-off at 3pm.
Carshalton Athletic: O’Donovan, Williams, Beeden, Read, Everitt, Hamilton-Downes, Frimpong, Bradford (Beere 70), Coker, Bassett, Babajide (Lucan 50).
Unused Subs: Lamont, Sankoh, Marshall.
Booked: Hamilton-Downes, Frimpong.
Lewes: Harvey, Elliott, Hughes, Tamplin, Vint, Penney, Murtagh (Whelpdale 58), Wood, Ogunwamide (Lumbombo-Kalala 85), Moore, Sablier (Egan 70).
Unused Subs: Dalling, Salmon.
Attendance: 414 (approximately 50 Rooks fans)